SMEs across a range of sectors are flourishing as consumers look to online alternatives during the lockdown, according to Hermes UK, the consumer delivery specialist. The company is currently delivering around 700,000 parcels a week on behalf of its Business Account customers (SMEs) – an uplift of 100% on this time last year.

In order to support these clients, Hermes has adapted a number of its services in line with government guidelines. This includes providing increased contact-free collections and doubling the number of lockers available for its customers to use.

Jon Oldroyd, Head of Business Accounts at Hermes UK, said: “Many of our SME clients have been able to respond quickly to the changing needs of consumers who are looking for alternative sources of products as a result of shop closures and travel restrictions. Our account managers have worked closely with them to understand how we can best support them during these challenging times whilst ensure that the safety of our people and our customers remains a top priority.”

Janis Liepa, of Wigan-based Assured Products, said: “We are proud to play our part in helping to manufacture and sell essential items to our customers in these challenging times, including hand sanitiser and wipes. We have seen our online orders rocket from 300 a week to more than 500 a day, the majority of which are sent through Hermes. Our staff have been amazing in coping with the extra demand and adhering to guidelines.

“These past few weeks have been difficult but also a game-changer for online businesses like ours. It has meant we’ve been able to get items safely to customers who are self-isolating. We’re grateful we have been able to cope with this increase in demand with Hermes’ support.”